A national alliance of housing industry bodies has launched the ‘Homes for Heroes’ campaign to build affordable homes for key workers after the COVID-19 crisis.
Led by the G15, an organisation made up of London’s largest housing associations, Homes for Heroes seeks to build 100,000 new affordable homes for key workers in five years with the support of local and national government, the private sector, and charities.
The campaign brings together bodies as diverse as housing associations, public figures, business leaders and modular home builders.
The group says that investment in modular construction would not only help often low-paid essential workers but would also support the UK’s social and economic recovery after the crisis.
Helen Evans, chair of the G15 and chief executive of Network Homes, said: “Essential workers on the frontline of this crisis are often among the lowest paid in society. Homes for Heroes is about giving these people a safe, secure, and genuinely affordable home to live in.
“With the collaboration of government and the housing sector, both private and social, we should bring forward a once-in-a-generation number of new homes for our essential workers, including those not eligible for traditional key-worker housing.”
Precision-manufacturing the homes would be ‘faster, greener, cheaper and better quality’ and would create jobs in the parts of the country where they will be needed most, the group said.
An ‘initial burst’ of thousands of homes could be delivered in months, while the costs of the homes could be spread by part-funding them through public giving, public land, government funding and housing associations’ resources, it added.
One of the Northern-based companies involved in the Homes for Heroes campaign is Legal and General, who recently received consent to build 154 new modular homes in North Yorkshire.
The insurance firm’s Modular Homes division will deliver the homes on Portholme Road in Selby, while its modular manufacturing facility in based in the nearby village of Sherburn-in-Elmet.
Rosie Toogood, CEO of Legal and General Modular Homes, said that delivering homes at speed will be ‘even more important’ post-COVID-19, making modular construction more suitable than traditional modes of construction.
Toogood commented: “The Homes for Heroes campaign unites several great causes: creating quality homes for genuine heroes, powering innovation and skills right at the time we need to create jobs, and pushing the bar upwards when it comes quality and sustainability. We’re delighted to support this initiative.”